• The San Juan Daily Star

NPP will attend status dialogues as statehood efforts continue

Sen. Thomas Rivera Schatz

By The Star Staff

New Progressive Party (NPP) Sen. Thomas Rivera Schatz informed Senate President José Luis Dalmau Santiago on Monday that although his party will appear as part of the planned Dialogue Table to discuss Puerto Rico status alternatives, the NPP will continue to lobby for statehood in Washington, D.C.

Sectors within the NPP consider the party’s decision to participate in the Dialogue Table to be treason. They said a majority of voters in a referendum last year selected statehood as a status option. In May of this year the NPP held an election to select shadow delegates to lobby for statehood. For instance, pro-statehood advocate Miriam Ramirez de Ferrer has criticized members of Congress who have refused to sign Puerto Rico’s admission request. She also said individuals should pursue statehood and not depend on the NPP or delegates.

Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia said he will continue to pursue statehood but is allowing Rivera Schatz to show up for the talks.

In a letter addressed to Dalmau Santiago, Rivera Schatz said the Dialogue Table should include the presidents of the Republican and Democratic parties on the island.

Dalmau Santiago invited the presidents of the various political parties on the island to establish a Dialogue Table and on Sunday indicated that all the presidents had agreed to show up.

“About the Dialogue Table to which you have invited the political leadership to discuss the issue of Puerto Rico’s status, I suggest you include the local presidents of the national parties, Democrat and Republican,” Rivera Schatz wrote in the letter.

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